The Pathological Big Five: An attempt to build a bridge between the psychiatric classification of personality disorders and the trait model of normal personality

  • Włodzimierz Strus Uniwersytet Kardynała Stefana Wyszyńskiego w Warszawie, Instytut Psychologii
  • Tomasz Rowiński Uniwersytet Kardynała Stefana Wyszyńskiego w Warszawie, Instytut Psychologii
  • Jan Cieciuch Uniwersytet Kardynała Stefana Wyszyńskiego w Warszawie, Instytut Psychologii
  • Monika Kowalska-Dąbrowska Uniwersytet Kardynała Stefana Wyszyńskiego w Warszawie, Instytut Psychologii
  • Iwona Czuma Uniwersytet Kardynała Stefana Wyszyńskiego w Warszawie, Instytut Psychologii
  • Cezary Żechowski Uniwersytet Kardynała Stefana Wyszyńskiego w Warszawie, Instytut Psychologii
Keywords: personality disorders; DSM-5 model; personality traits; PID-5; Five-Factor Model


The fifth edition of the DSM diagnostic manual has presented a hybrid system of personality disorder diagnosis, which integrates categorical and dimensional approach to diagnosis, building a kind of bridge between psychiatric classifications of disorders and psychological research on the structure of normal personality. The key element of this system is a new dimensional model of pathological personality traits. This article presents the results of the empirical verification of this model in Poland. The participants in the study were 754 individuals from the nonclinical population, aged 16–86 (M = 36.45, SD = 16.65), including 52% women. Normal personality traits were measured by means of the Revised NEO Personality Inventory (NEO-PI-R), and pathological personality traits – by means of the Personality Inventory for DSM-5 (PID-5); the risk of personality disorders was determined on the basis of SCID-II (Structured Clinical Interview for DSM-IV Axis II) questionnaire scores. The obtained results proved to be consistent with the expectations: (1) on the level of the five broad traits, the pathological DSM-5 model strongly corresponds to the Five-Factor Model of normal personality; (2) the DSM-5 model predicts the categories of disorders better than the Five-Factor Model does.


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